Suggested QR / Barcode scanner for Android

It seems the suggested app for scanning QR codes on android is full of malware, see recent reviews:

Not something I installed, but seems to have only happened in the last few weeks, but as I’m suggesting people to test using syncthing it’s not a great look.

Can we get this changed please?

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I have no skin in this game, but isn’t it odd that all the reviews are like “was great until recently, now I get browser hijacking when the app isn’t even running” while the app was last updated two years ago? Is that how android malware works?

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I have had the app for over 7 years. It has been working perfectly. The negative reviews are all fake.

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I have this app installed on two devices. There have been no recent updates. I have even used it in the time since these reports appear to have showed up, and seen none of this.

Moreover, some of the complaints there should be impossible given the (limited) level of access Android apps get to certain parts of the system. I’d suggest maybe some malware author found himself a scapegoat.

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Thanks for all the replies guys.

Good to know it’s not causing any issues, and like I said I’ve not got it installed myself to verify and don’t have a requirement to do so.

Would be interesting to know why this is being review bombed so heavily over a sustained period of time as may put off other new members.

I literally had to visit a customer today because this app was launching a host of very unpleasant URLs to the browser, constantly. According to the Google Play on their device, the app was updated on 4th (I think) Jan. The reviews crying malware are accurate.

Edit: OK it was not that barcode app, it was a different barcode app.

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I had the same experience with this Barcode Scanner app. Full screen intrusive ads when unlocking my phone, which went away when deleting that app. Dodgy app for sure.

Did you double-check to make sure it’s this app?

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Regardless of all of this: Where exactly do we recommend it? Someone recently added the scanning ability directly to the app, so we shouldn’t recommend anything anymore. Though that’s not released on gplay yet due to “the delays”.

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I’ve been using Binary Eye for a few years and am happy with it. It’s open source using ZXing library and is on Play and F-Droid.

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Hi fragtion. I am very interested, did your copy come from the Play store? Did you install it yourself or was it preloaded?

I installed it from Play store years ago. I barely used it but it was always on my phone. Suddenly a few weeks ago I started seeing a full screen ad appearing on the screen when unlocking phone. using Recents button I was able to identify it as coming from the “Barcode Scanner” app (the only such app I had on my phone was “com.google.zxing.client.android”). The moment I removed that app, the intrusive ads went away… The app is still in my play store library, but uninstalled. Judging by the number of reviews with similar problems, clearly I wasn’t the only one. Personally I wouldn’t trust that app again but yeah ymmv

Yeah, that is why I asked… I have it on about 7 devices at the moment, and haven’t had any issues. My latest install was on a new device just after Christmas.

The issue is, its open source, anyone can embed the com.google.zxing.client.android package in their app. Although I wonder if someone has managed to leverage an evilQR code. You know, thanks to covid having people scan random QR codes every time they enter a building.

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